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April 24, 2013     Hays Free Press
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April 24, 2013

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+ HAYS Get to know who's running for CISD school board. - Page 3B Hays April 24, 2013 • Page 1B m m Hays second base- man Alex Robles attempts to tag a sliding Lobos baserun- ner out at second base in their loss to Leh- man 8-0 Friday. PHOTO BY LINCOLN RAMIREZ BY CHARLES DEE A first inning home rtm to deep left center field by Jacob Urea was all Justin Penney really needed to pitch the Lobos to an 8-0 victory over the Hays Rebels on Friday night at Lobo field. After getting a ground ball double play with the bases loaded in the top of the first in- ning to quell a potential Rebel rally, Penney scattered four Rebel hits, three by Nate Scott, while striking out nine and walking only three. "Justin has been solid all year long," said Lobos head coach Toby Rob- inson. "He has had a lot of bad FRIDAY GAMES * Lehman at Boerne Champion * Hays vs. Kerrville Tivy luck this year. Today, luck went his way." Shortstop Mario Gar- za led the Lobo defense, which notched only one error, by tak- ing a ground ball deep in the hole between short and third and throwing out Scott at third to stop the only other Rebel threat in the fourth. The Lobos were tenacious at the plate, exemplified by Ryan Teilo hanging tough on an inside curve and reach first as a hit batsman in the bottom of the fourth. First baseman pressure," said Rebels head Derek Cisneros moved Tello to coach David Null. "Lehman put third with a single to right, fol- pressureonourdefense.Wejust lowed by an RBI ground ball did not get the job done." After by Aaron Scheckler that scored two outs in the same inning, Tello. Seniors Xavier Sollz and Scheclder, Soliz and Flores each Ben Flores then added a pair drew walks to load the bases. of singles to plate Scheckler Leadoff hitter Garza hit a slow and make the score 3-0 after 4 roller down third that scored all ."We saw alot of curves, change three runners following a pair ups and first-pitch fastballs," of Rebel errors. Urea ended the said Soils, commenting on the scoring at eight in the sixth after Lobos' offensive success. "Our his single was followed by a Le- mentality was to swing, to put hman double to left that scored the ball in play." Urea from first. Hnnter Lehman greeted Reb- The Lobos, now 6-7 in dis- el reliever Alec Swofford with trict, kept their playoff hopes a single in the fifth. A pair of alive.WhiletheRebelsfellto8-5 throwing errors quickly moved in district play, they are still in a Lehman around to score. "The good position to contend for a errors happened because of playoffspot. +, BY MOSES LEOS III For Hays High School senior Lindsey McCurdy, maintaining success on the golf course is as easy as driving the ball down the fairway. Last season, McCurdy claimed the 2012 UIL State Golf Championship, shooting two under 142 for the tourna- ment. On April 29 and 30, McCurdy will attempt to defend her fide at the Onion Creek Golf Course in Austin. The joy of reaching the tournament again was apparent. "I am so ex- cited," said McCurdy.. "Because I won last year, it will be cool to see how I do this year. It's excit- ing." McCurdy's road to State this season was spearheaded by dominant play. On April 8-9 at the District tourna- ment, she won the event by seven shots, shooting a 67 and 72, finishing five shots under par. During the Regional tourna- ment on April 15-18, McCurdy continued her torrid pace, winning by seven shots once again, shooting a pair of even par 72 rounds. Yet, the dominance McCurdy has displayed this season took time to flour- ish. "It is always hard," said McCurdy of the road she has taken to the State level. "Because of basketball, I don't get the op- portunity to practice that much. I slowly have to get better and better. I started to play well and feel good about my level of play two weeks before district." Yet, her overall ability to progress and develop as a golfer has allowed McCurdy to rise above the ranks. Most impressed by her progression is Rebel Golf Coach Danny Preuss, who has kept an eye on her play since she was in sixth grade. "Even as a 6th grader, I knew that she was something special," Preuss said. "It was just ttle way she hit balls off the driving range. Preuss noted that even when she was a freshman, McCurdy portrayed signs of an elite athlete. '~ks a freshman, she al- most made it to state," said Preuss, who was golf coach at Lehman during that season. "We were in one of the toughest regions that year. She shot a great couple of rounds." McCurdy's ability to leam from that experience gave her the confidence to excel over the next three years. "In her sophomore year, finishing in the top 5 (at the State Tournament) was a big deal," said Preuss. "When junior year rolled around, there was only one goal; win state." Her demeanor on the course is what Preuss lauds the most. "Everything she does is workmanlike; her demeanor is the same---she has a job to do," said Preuss. "Her improvement from year to year is great, which will take her into college. She's a great kid. Hopefully, her goal is to repeat as state champion again. Not many people can say they have won back-to-back state titles." McCurdy continues to find ways to improve her game, despite reaching the state tournament for the past three years. Last weekend, she participated in a Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) qualifying event, with the top two out of 18 participants going to the North Texas Shootout in Irving. While McCurdy did not make the final cut, she was proud of her abil- ity to hang with the professionals. Her third place finish, missing the cut by only two shots, was a learn- ing experience. "I was really happy about that, even though I did not make it. I am happy with where I finished," said McCurdy. "In bigger tour- naments, I really play my best. I played with an LPGA player at that event; it was cool to see how she played, watching what she was doing. It helped me a lot, how I stand with every- Lindsey McCurdy aim to repeat her state win at the UIL goft tournament. I thing." The ability to use the experience of contending with the pros gives her con- fidence to vie for back-to-back State Championships. Additionally, McCurdy knows what she needs to do on the links to claim another tide. "We've always noticed that the short game is the key to winning it. Every- one hits it about the same," she said. "It comes down to who makes more putts, and who is more consistent around the greens. That's what I've been working on the most." Should McCurdy succeed in winning State for a second year in a row, it would place her along side pole-vaulters Brimi Lawerence (2002-2003) and Jessica Doyle (2007-2008) as the only athletes in school history to repeat as individual state champs. While winning another title is some- thing she eagerly desires, McCurdy un- derstands that a well played round is paramount above all else. "Winning state is great, but I want to do well in general," said Mc- Curdy the course, I want to make sure that I want to play as well as I can. That's matters most to me. Winning will be nice too, but as long as I can come off the course liking how I played, I will be okay with that." Hays CISD athletes will be competing at the regional track meet Friday and Saturday at the Alamo Stadium in San Antonio. Those qualifying for regional meet include: HAYS HIGH GIRLS • Calthn Martin - 100 M Dash, 4x100 M Relay • Rebekah Pogue - 4x100 M Relay, Pole Vault • Meagan Gray- Long Jump, 4x100 M Relay, Pole Vault • Esmi Fuentes - 800 M Run • Savannah Derrick- TRACK MEET • Field events begin at 9 a.m. Friday; track pre- lims begin at 4 p.m. • Running finals begin at noon Saturday 4x100 M Relay • ]uliaWidmer- 300 M Hurdles HAYS HIGH BOYS • Raney Moore- Pole Vault • Caleb Kimbro - 4x100 M Relay, 4x400 M Relay • Hunter Noey - 4x100 M Relay, 4x400 M Relay • Travis Noey- 4x100 M Relay, 400 M Dash, 4x400 M Relay • Martin Horn- 110 M Hurdles • Dylan Kaspar-4xl00 M Relay • Jared Rodrignez- 4x400 M Relay LEHMAN HIGH GIRLS • BlancaVillegas - Discus • Cheyenne Morgan- Discus, 4x200 Relay • Ariana Gallegos - High Jump • HaleyVaughan- Shot Put • Christina Ramirez - Shot Put • Clarissa Rayos- 4x100 Relay, 4x200 Relay • Heidi Munoz- 4x100 Relay, 4x200 Relay • Aleeya Eskridge - 4x100 Relay • Ashley Marslow- 4x100 Relay, 4x200 Relay Lehman Boys results were not sent into Hays Free Press by coaches. PHOTO BY MOSES LEOS III Hays senior centerfielder Hannah Ramsey attempts to throw out a runner at home plate against Schertz Clemens on April 6. Rebel softball begins their journey to a state title on Friday against San Antonio Jefferson. BY MOSES LEOS III On April 19, the Hays Rebel softball team concluded the reg- ular season with a non-district road game against state ranked 5A Smithson Valley. The Reb- els put up a determined effort against the defending 2012 4A State Champions, rallying from a two run deficit in the seventh to send the game into extra in- nings. However, the Rebels even- tually fell to the Rangers, falling 6-5 in a 12-inning marathon. Yet, the reasoning for the non- district tilt was not limited to the simple idea of a win or loss for Hays. Rather, the lessons learned from that evening fulfilled one purpose: To prepare the Rebels for postseason play. "Smithson Valley was a great test for us," said head coach Aaron Fuller said in an e-mailed response. "They're a great team and our gifts now know that we can play and compete at that high of a level." But, one thing was very clear to Fuller and his team follow- ing the loss to Smithson Valley - in order to continue having dreams of reaching the state tournament at Red McCombs Field in Austin, the Rebels must be ready to fight game in, game out. "It's also humbling because we know if we don't come out fo- cused and play our best then we can be beat," Fuller said. The effort begins Friday, when the Rebels will host San Antonio Jefferson from 28-4/t in the bi- district round of the UIL play- offs. The team's ability to keep the pressure off of their shoulders against Jefferson will loom large. "The key to success will be for us to try not to do too much," Fuller said. "Playoffs, especially a single elimination game, tends to add pressure. If we keep our composure, don't put pressure on ourselves to do too much, and just play like we've been playing all year, things will take care of themselves." Aiding that endeavor will be the stellar pitching of Sarah Leal, who has been the catalyst for success for the Rebels this sea- son. In 122 innings pitched this season, Leal has compiled 142 strikeouts, with an earned run average (ERA) of 1.77. Her abil- ity to stifle opposing offenses is one of the mitigating factors to HAYS VERSUS S.A. JEFFERSON When: April 26, 6 p.m. Where: Hays Rebel Softball Field Who: Hays (27-4-1, 12-2 in 27-4A), San Antonio Jefferson (13-15, 7-5 in 28-4A) the success of the team. "Sarah's ability to pound the strike zone will be key," Fuller said. "If Sarah hits her spots and we play solid defense behind her then we'll be ok." Hays' proficiency at the plate has been a large factor in their success, which has led the program to its first district championship in a decade. The Rebel offense is a senior-laden squad, le~ by senior right fielder Brayden Pinckard, senior center fielder Hannah Ramsey and se- nior first baseman Clarissa Gon- zalez. Each player has compiled batting averages above .450, with on-base percentages above .470. Additionally, all three have done a tremendous job of hit- ting for extra bases and driving in runs, with the power triumvi- rate hitting for 36 doubles, 14 tri- ples, 8 home runs and 116 RBIs combined. Their tenacity and aggressiveness has helped the team compile runs en masse, winning ten games by ten runs or more this season. "Our offense has to continue to swing the bats like we're ca- pable," said Fuller, comment- ing on what Hays must do of- fensively to bypass Jefferson. "Our entire lineup is capable of swinging the bats and driving in runs. For the team, the ability to stay on top of the fundamentals will provide an avenue of suc- cess for a lengthy playoff run. "Defensively, we need to make all the routine plays. In the play- offs we can't afford to give up any free bases or any free runs," Fuller said. "Offensively we just need to make sure we stay con- sistent swinging the bats and producing run support." If the Rebels can maintain those elements, the sky- or the state tournament ~- is the limit. "We're coming into the play- offs playing well and with a lot of confidence," Fuller said. "So as long as we stay focused and continue to do what we've been doing all year, it could be a fun and wild ride." +